Russian Foreign Minister Condemns Hasty Withdrawal of US and NATO Forces

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said “the question of international recognition of the Taliban is currently no longer a consideration.”

This was conveyed in a press conference on the sidelines of the General Assembly of the United Nations (UN), Saturday (25/9). He added, “we will depart from that premise, and when we receive a request for the appointment of a new ambassador.”

Commenting on the current security situation in Afghanistan, Lavrov said “unfortunately the withdrawal of US and NATO troops (North Atlantic Treaty Organization/North Atlantic Treaty Organization) was carried out hastily without considering the consequences. As is well known, (one of) the consequences is the large number of weapons remaining in Afghanistan.”

“We must all ensure that these weapons are not used for destructive purposes,” he stressed.

For Russia, he added, the top priority is preventing “the spread of extremism to neighboring countries,” and “of course the continued terrorist threat in Afghanistan is also unacceptable.”

Lavrov said the Taliban had announced that “they are determined to fight ISIS and other terrorist groups and we will do everything possible to support them to ensure that.”

Asked by reporters about progress towards reaching the Iran nuclear agreement, Lavrov said “Iran has not done anything that is clearly prohibited. Iran complies with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and Additional Protocols to the treaty and its guarantees.

“Iran is currently not complying with most of the obligations that exist in the JCPOA, which are currently not enforced after America left the agreement. What is being discussed now is how to fully restore the agreement where Iran has no justification for making exceptions other than fulfilling its obligations. ” [em/ft]

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